i have lived with these speakers for some 6 months, and am very pleased. they have almost everything that i would look for in a monitor: great treble, rich but accurate mids, and fairly strong bass. the treble is much more natural and detailed, and the electronic glare is much reduced compared to the B&W 805s that i had previously. i have yet to reproduce the Solo's much vaunted soundstaging within my own system, but my setup is far from ideal. maybe when i move them to a larger room... besides, they look very cool. all in all, i am very pleased--i'm sticking with these for a while!
system: Gallo Solo's, Silver Audio Symphony 32, BAT VK200, Silver Audio Bullet 6.0, SF Line 1 with Kevin Deal Tungsram's on BDRCs, Silver Audio Bullet 6.0, EVS Millenium 24/192 DAC, Silver Audio Bullet 6.0, Monarchy DIP MKII, Kimber AGDL, Panasonic A310 on BDRCs, Sunfire True Sub MkII, Kimber Heros
I am an original owner of a Gallo Nucleus set. I have one of the original, polyethelene single wire (not bi-wire or cap modified) Gallos. In fact, I probably own the only prototype version that can not be "tuned" with caps or biwired. My speakers are currently placed on sand filled Target stands with Gallos supplied adaptors.
Throughout the years, I never had the desire to actually "trade" in my Solos for anything else. I thought about it, but I never found a better speaker. B&W stuff is OK, but for the money, my Gallos are hard to beat because of that 340 degree tweeter.
The Gallos are pretty close to an ideal "apt" speaker as you can get. They do not produce the killer bass that might get you evicted. (Remember, they should be considered to be mini-monitors not full range floorstanders.) However, the the soundstaging is scary. Treble is good, but with bad recordings very nasty. It is a revealing speaker, and it can be real brutal to sibilants. In other words, the Gallos can be real revealing of bad stuff up the chain.
Overall . . . Imaging is sound. Soundstaging is sound. Because of the lack of deep earth shaking bass, they can sound bright. They work well with Creek equipment, but I have recently moved into home theater vis a vis a Fremer recommended Onkyo 575. Really bright now, but I am messing with cables to adjust the overall brightness. (The system's brightness might also be due to the Panasonics A110 built in feature of downgrading the PCM to 48 instead of 96 I also figure that I need a good subwoofer now to adjust the tonal palete.)
For the money, there is no way to achieve "electrostatic" or "planar" sound without giving up your livingroom space for a Maggie or Martin Logan. Gallos are the only option if you like planar like imaging, but want to look out your windows. Most of my friends are always astonished by my "eye balls" disappearing act.
I know the recent version of the Solos are better. In fact, I am probably one of the few die hards with a polyethelene version, but it is a speaker I chose to hold on to.
If you like imaging and soundstaging, the Gallos are the set. If you like a "warm" sound, I would say Vandys. In terms of minimonitors, I don't know of any speaker that betters the Gallos.
Customer service is a strength with this company. Gary is a good person who tries to help everyone who owns a Gallo product.
Current system configuration Receiver: Onkyo 575 (previously Creek 4240SE) Speakers: Gallos Solos Surrounds: Gallos Micros DVD: Panasonic A110 Cables: Kimber 8TC and PBJ (to be changed soon)
I have auditioned numerous speakers over the past two years. I finally settled on the Gallo Nucleus Solo speaker series when the company had already stopped production. Fortunately, I found a pair in a small shop in Wisconsin Rapids, WI. By the way, if you're in the market for good gear at very good prices, check out Salon One Audio (715-421-5910) and speak with Bruce. He's cool and gave me a great deal on the Solos. I received them this past weekend. After assembly and positioning them they sounded great right out of the box. I am told that one often has to wait for speakers to break-in and "open up." Well, these were in full bloom right away. If I can expect them to get better, I'll begin to expect that Gallo's are part of the Lord's stereo in heaven. There is no box sound. No coloration. It's like the speakers aren't there. It's just blissful,beautiful music. The TV sounds great, movies, etc. It's like your in the room with the performer. Every disk in my collection sounds better. I had decent front channel speakers before, (Polk Audio SDA compacts) which are going to become my rear channel speakers in my H.T. set up. But these Solos just blow me away. If you can find a pair, buy 'em. You won't be disappointed. Even my wife likes the way they look and sound. Their practically indestructible, which is a concern around kids. Enjoy the tunes :-} Can I give more than 5 speakers? If not then 5 will have to do. Two thumbs up.
I have owned these eccentric speakers for 5 months. Previously, I have owned and used B&W matrix 801 series3 speakers for 4 years. Some might wonder, because 801's are more expensive, with wider-frequency range than Solos. Well, I downgraded my audio components in some aspects. So what? I don't care. I love Solo's more than any speakers I have ever listened to. 801's are accurate, in some sense, of course. And they have such a dynamism if bi-amped with some behemoths. But,they are just too large for ordinary living room(I think they need a wharehouse-sized room to sound properly without room treatment, and at least 30'x40'room with some recording-studio level treatment, neither were out of my ability), and sometimes, music sounded somewhat dry and made me feel fatigue after a few hours listening. I thought of the last 2 problems for a long time, listening to various speakers, because I found the same problems in the most famous speakers on the planet.("Vivid, dynamic sound & music" vs."Easy to get fatigue, and reverse trade-offs). My conclusion is, 801's 3-units are not working harmoniously(charming midrange and tweeter's shot-gun co-wedding with heavy-weight woofer), and the electronic cross-over network makes things far worse. Subtle discrepency of each unit's phase and tonal difference, and time lag of woofer made sound a little bit "unnatural". It's something like a pair of glasses using a high resolution lens with some slight crack and slightly tinted with different colors. You'll certainly feel headache and fatigue reading a book wearing these glasses in 5 minutes. On the contrary, A pair of dark sun-glasses with some slight crack on it and slightest color difference won't give you such an headache while Sun-tan by the pool. That's why some expensive speakers sound more unbarably sometimes, than mass-product speakers. Difference and lag between speaker units and electronic cross-over network is the problem. But it's not a 801's unique problem, but a destiny of every muti-way dynamic speaker units. But who on earth can make a full-range reproducing dynamic speakers without electronic cross-over network? As I said, I had a chance to listen to almost every major speakers regardless of price-range. The most impressive creature was, JM Lab's top-of the line(not Wilson's, of course) which was way out-of-my-range in both size and $$$. And the second was, odd enough, a Maestro's home made speaker with a single full-range unit mounted on a big, solid mahogany box. They made a staggering natural sound 2 die 4 which was not for sale. The third? MBL's omni directional speakers with simply amazing and vivid sound-stage. I was not impressed at all with Dunlavy's, PSB's, and the most of electrostatic speakers and hybrids. They were good speakers, but not worth replacing my 801's. Now I am happy with Gallo's Nucleus Solo's, hooked up to Sunfire's amp and Audible Illusion's pre. Pretty humble, aren't they? But they do unbelievable job altogether. I can say, this is a magic of "downgrade". Way out from struggle, stress, budget, lust for future upgrade, and wife's argue. Amazing tonal accuracy, chilling sound-stage, and comes with quite a dynamism, if necessary. And more important, no impose of fatigue. What else does a man need for serious music listening? From this point on, it's not a matter of music listening, but an audio listening, looking left and right by direction of vanity, reviews on the magazines, buy and sell similar gears spending 4 or 5 times the money, without pretty noticeable results. Gosh, I love music. And I love these speakers.... However, I have to say that there's no free lunch in this world of speakers, ruled by precize mechanical law of physics. In this case, "Burden of woofer" is one critical weak point. Dynaudio's 6.5" woofer reproduces from about 32HZ to around 2.5KHZ. This means the woffer itself works as an almost single full-range unit. Even for the most extra-ordinary speaker units, this is such a burden. If an amp fails to provide them with sufficient Ampare, they will certainly sound lack of overall vividness, lack of dynamism in mid-lows, loosing lots of details in bass. Most of ordinary people will still be impressed or even shocked by the sound, though. To be more honest, though I feel no defiency listening to most of classical music and accoustic jazz whatever the kind, but I feel deprived of some bit when I listen to the some rocks because I believe, the bits and some bass note of rock's are to be felt by body, rather than be heard by ears. It's the core of the Rock. To do so, not the quality, but the quantity of bass that speaks. Evidently, Solo's cannot provide that kind of bit. So I tried Genesis 900's subwoofer that I have for H.T.configuration. Cross-over at around 70HZ(overlapping by 1 full octave with Solo's). not perfect, but I could feel the rythm created by the bits. After all, I think of all the flood of so-called high-end speakers, Nucleus series speakers are the nearest to the perfectness of reproducing the natural sound, under $10K. But If you decide to cross the river beyond and get into the queer land of full range electrostatic speakers, against all odds, that's quite another story..